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Bloodstock Festival 2021: Bands You Absolutely Have To Check Out!

Bloodstock Festival 2021: Bands You Absolutely Have To Check Out!

No Sleep Till Bloodstock.

Metalheads around the globe rejoice! The time is finally here; where we can shake off the cobwebs, loosen our dormant joints, turn it up to 11 and boldly stride with our brothers and sisters in arms, to valiantly hit the mosh pit once more. That's right, Bloodstock Festival is back from 11th-15th August! And by all accounts, it's back with a vengeance. 

Music fans across the nation are hungry to get their festival fix after a year off, and boy does it feel good to be stewing with friends, unshowered and unslept in a partially collapsed tent eating out of tins and foraging for our next slither of sustenance to keep the party going. Like so many others we've missed live music and gigs desperately, and the wait to see if UK festivals will get the green light has been an agonizing journey of heartache, boredom and redemption.

That's why we're so stoked to be heading to Bloodstock, as 18,000 fans descend upon Catton Park, Derbyshire, to worship at the temple of all that is heavy metal! Revered as the UK's number one independent metal festival, it has to be one of our favourite events on the calendar; under the vibrant August sun with 5 days and 4 stages of pure, unadulterated metal bliss, sweat and tears. Celebrating the heavier side of life with some of the biggest and most exciting names in alternative music, previous acts to have headbanged upon the hallowed stages of Catton Park include Slayer, Lamb Of God, Gojira, Megadeth and many more!

You've got to fight for your right to party, and this year is no exception to letting the good times roll, as COVID-secure precautions have been extensively implemented to ensure the safety and enjoyment of everyone involved. So raise those horns, swill your tankards and prepare for the mosh, as we run down the bands that you absolutely have to check out at Bloodstock Festival 2021!

While She Sleeps.

Blending brutal metallic riffs and soaring melodies in a choir of anarchic chaos, While She Sleeps have to be one of our favourite metal bands of the decade, the Yorkshire quintet constantly evolving their style and seemingly rewriting the playbook on modern metal and cross-genre experimentation with each release. Their live shows have gone down in legend as incendiary, anthemic revelations of uncensored chaos, anti-establishmentism and unity. Truly one of the foremost purveyors of British metalcore and supporting the release of the new album 'Sleeps Society,' you do not want to miss these guys!

FFO: Thrice, Norma Jean, Darkest Hour, Yorkshire.

Listen To: 'Seven Hills,' 'New World Torture,' 'Nervous,' 'The Guilty Party.'

Where? Ronnie James Dio Stage, Saturday 14th August.

Venom Prison.

If there was a soundtrack to you crossing the murky depths of the River Styx, before two-stepping your way through the gates of damnation to face eternal judgement, chances are Venom Prison would be the band playing it. Delivering extreme and uncompromising riffs, the Welsh death metal titans are 100% the real deal. No gimmicks, just solid tunes, crushing grooves and brutal, in your face metal. Venom Prison fly the flag proudly and are on the front lines, pushing their brand of hardcore-infused metal and the British flag aloft for the rest of the world to covet and envy.

FFO: Nails, Cursed Earth, Employed To Serve, Xibalba.

Listen To: 'Daemon Vulgaris,' 'Asura's Realm,' 'Corrode The Black Sun.'

Where? Ronnie James Dio Stage, Friday 13th August.

Black Spiders.

Big, loud, ballsy riffs straight outta the steel city. Black Spiders have been around forever delivering muscular, kick back and party tunes since 2008, Sheffield style. Riding high on the shoulders of their new self-titled album, Black Spiders philosophy is simple; no-nonsense rock 'n roll with a heavy dose of power chords, 4/4 drums, skulls and leather. Follow the cobwebs and the arachnid beast should see you through the weekend quite nicely, as it unleashes its ferocious assault of big riffs and even bigger choruses upon Catton park.

FFO: Kvelertak, Motorhead, The Wildhearts, Airborne.

Listen To: 'Kiss Tried To Kill Me,' 'Good Times,' 'Stay Down,' 'Young Tongues.'

Where? Sophie Lancaster Stage, Sunday 15th August.


If you've never heard of or even checked out Evile, then where on Earth have you been all your life? If you like your thrash scolding hot, relentless and sweaty then Evile is just the band for you. Classic Bay Area thrash with grimace inducing riffs. From start to finish this band are merciless, take no prisoners and are the perfect option to indulge your hell-bound fantasies of The Big Four, golden era of thrash metal. Legend has it drummer Ben Carter used to work in our Leeds store and could often be found air-drumming to Pantera way too loud...

FFO: Exodus, Testament, Havok.

Listen To: 'Thrasher,' Enter The Grave,' 'Cult,' 'Tomb.'

Where? Sophie Lancaster Stage, Friday 13th August.


Progressive, ethereal and evocative; Loathe are one of the freshest bands to hit the scene in recent years, fusing elements of rock, metal and dreamy soundscapes to create a world blossoming with melody, expansive timbres and emotive lyricism. Imagine Loathe as the protege of a Korn meets Deftones lovechild, for people who were born after 2000. Bringing their unique cocktail of dissonant nu-metal-cum Zimmer-esque soundscapes, Loathe are one of the most exciting bands on the bill as you'll never quite know what to expect from the next song, a wall of death or arms wide open as you gaze upon the majesty of the universe?

FFO: Deftones, Cane Hill, Architects, Heart Of A Coward.

Listen To: 'Dance On My Skin,' 'Red Room,' 'Two Way Mirror,' White Hot.'

Where? Ronnie James Dio Stage, Friday 13th August.


Fusing slow, hazy sludge with furious blastbeats, Conjurer dredge up a bleak vision of a colourless world with wallowing guitar chugs and post-apocalyptic vocals courtesy of Dan Nightingale. Well respected and a firm favourite on the festival circuit, Conjurer have been making waves since 2014, injecting a taste of Nordic darkness into a genre often saturated with overly-polished bands. Expect slow, sinking breakdowns and tunes that will drag you through the mires of oblivion.

FFO: Black Breath, Sunn O))), Russian Circles.

Listen To: 'Choke,' 'Endeavour,' 'Scorn.'

Where? Ronnie James Dio Stage, Saturday 14th August.


The Gods of heavy metal have spoken and decided that a weekend at Bloodstock shall not be complete without a visit from all that is unholy; the hellbent for leather Judas Priest. One of the stalwarts and pioneers of NWOBHM, the Priest have been gracing our stages and spreading the gospel of heavy metal for decades, bestowing their pounding riffs and the demonic vocals of rock legend Rob Halford upon us mere mortals and the masses before them, to revel in their wake of fire, roaring motorbike engines and chains of furious steel. Celebrating 50 years of Judas Priest, this will be a real experience for any devout metalhead, one for the bucket list and any true rocker would kill to be able to share their stories of witnessing such a hugely influential band and one of the original heavy metal titans. Get your horns in the air and all hail Judas Priest.

FFO: Dio, Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath, W.A.S.P.

Listen To: 'You've Got Another Thing Coming,' 'Painkiller,' 'Breaking The Law.'

Where? Ronnie James Dio Stage, Sunday 15th August.

So there you have it! Our definitive must-see guide to Bloodstock Festival 2021. Enjoy the music, enjoy the atmosphere, take care of each other, come home battered and bruised with amazing memories and most importantly, rock on!